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Improvements for banks after budget

Improvements to Cambodia’s banking and finance sector are expected to come about as a result of the 2013 national budget, a Council of Ministers spokesman said.

“We will dedicate resources to ensuring macro-economic stability,” spokesman for the Council of Ministers, Phay Siphan said.

“Essentially, this means continuing a good rate of GDP growth and keeping inflation below three per cent,” he added.

These measures, in conjunction with an early warning system will be put in place as a measure to ensure the banking system does not collapse, will be “a firewall to protect Cambodia from what’s happening overseas”, Siphan said.

Charles Vann, president of the Association of Banks in Cambodia, said they have been monitoring the banking industry closely and believes banks co-operate well with the government but does not anticipate too many changes to the system in 2013.

“The figures so far for 2012 are very promising; 2013 should also be very good,” he said.

“But 2013 is an election year and, in terms of activity, election years are usually very quiet,” he added.

Four commercial banks were contacted for their comments but were unable to respond.

The agricultural sector will also benefit from the 2013 budget; $27million dollars from the national budget will be directed to infrastructure projects to grow this sector.

“Cambodia depends heavily on the agricultural sector. So it’s important to dedicate funds to stimulate it,” Siphan said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Erika Mudie at erika.mudie@phnompenhpost.com

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